354 OFWs in Jeddah coming home via chartered flight —labor attache
Published July 4, 2020 12:14pm
By RONALDO CONCHA, GMA
MANILA — A batch of 354 pandemic-affected OFWs are on their way back to the Philippines on a chartered flight expected to arrive on Saturday in Manila.
Labor Attache Nasser Munder of the Philippine Overseas Labor Office (POLO) in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia told GMA News that the flight was arranged by the Philippine Consulate and the Office of the Undersecretary for Migrant Workers Affairs (OUMWA).
Munder said the chartered Philippine Airlines flight took off Friday night and is expected to arrive in the Philippines anytime on Saturday.
On the other hand, Vice-Consul Alfred Kristiffer Guiang said that the batch of repatriates are those who lost their jobs due to the COVID-19 crisis and have no means of securing tickets for a flight back home.
Among them is a 6-month pregnant household service worker, who thanked the Philippine foreign office for allowing her to go home.
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Moreover, Guiang said they are negotiating for more chartered flights as the number of OFWs in Saudi Arabia who want to be repatriated have ballooned due to retrenchments caused by the pandemic.
Thousands of jobless OFWs have been repatriated by batches with the help concerned Philippine government agencies since the onslaught of the COVID-19 pandemic that has dealt a huge toll on the global economy. —LBG, GMA News